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Your Prep Sports
IOWA CITY – While putting up huge numbers the past four years Ashley Joens never really gave much more than a glance at her loft stat lines.
Midway through the top scoring game of her career Joens admitted she took a quick peek at the scoreboard to see how many points she had in Friday’s non-conference matchup with United Township, Illinois.
The City High senior could hardly believe what she saw.
“I looked up one time and it was 40 points,” Joens said. “I couldn’t believe it. I didn’t know I had that many, it surprised me.”
Joens added four more points, finishing with a career-high and setting a new City High single game scoring record with 44 points.
With two free throws in the final seconds of the third quarter Joens broke the previous single game scoring record of 42 held by her older sister Courtney Joens.
Ashley Joens was a freshman when Courtney Joens made 8-of-9 3-pointers and poured in 42 points in a win at Cedar Rapids Kennedy in 2014.
That performance stuck with the younger Joens.
“I remember that game, she had 42 and just couldn’t miss,” Ashley Joens said. “I knew the record was 42 because Courtney had 42 that game.”
The top two scoring performances in City High history now belong to the Joens family.
Ashley Joens finished 19-of-26 from the field, made 1-of-2 from 3-point range and 5-of-10 from the free throw line on her way to 44 points.
With the performance Joens upped her state-leading scoring average to 28.8 points per game.
“Just look at her stats,” City High coach Bill McTaggart said. “She’s shooting a high percentage, she’s shooting great from 3, she’s playing really well.”
Joens had 24 points in the first quarter and added 10 each in the second and third before sitting out the entire fourth quarter.
She added 11 rebounds for her third straight double-double.
“Rebounding might be what she does best, she doesn’t have a lot of weaknesses,” Joens said. “She has great hands. I think she is better at getting more out of her teammates this year.”
The low point in the inaugural Liberty High program came December 9th in the form of a 71-17 loss to 4A fifth-ranked Center Point-Urbana.
What followed that game has been the best stretch in the program’s short history.
Liberty High brings a four-game winning streak into 2018 after back-to-back road wins over Northeast and Keokuk last week.
The Lightning have won by an average of better than 12 points during its four-game streak that started with home wins over Williamsburg and Fort Madison.
Liberty High has evened its season record at 5-5 with the four straight wins.
There are 12 players that will enter 2018 averaging 23 points per game or better and three of those players are from the Your Prep Sports area.
Ashley Joens leads the state averaging 28.8 points per game.
West Branch senior Tatum Koenig ranks seventh in the state averaging 23.4 points per game while Clear Creek Amana sophomore Karsyn Stratton is 11th in Iowa scoring 23.5 points per game.
Liberty High sophomore Sam McPherson had 19 points and four steals in a 44-33 win over Northeast.
City High sophomore Rose Nkumu had 22 points, nine steals and six assists in a 91-56 win over United Township.
West High junior Cailyn Morgan had 21 points, six rebounds and three assists in a 75-71 win over Cedar Rapids Prairie.
Clear Creek Amana sophomore Karsyn Stratton had 30 points, five rebounds, three assists and three steals in a 49-29 win over Williamsburg.
West Branch senior Tatum Koenig had 22 points, seven rebounds, seven steals and four assists in a 54-50 win over Mid-Prairie.